Ten Things of Thankful 129 (on kindness) #10Thankful

I was hugely challenged this week, by a status update on Facebook by Galit Breen, who offered the opportunity to participate in a giveaway in exchange for people sharing the last time they did something kind. To my chagrin I couldn’t think of anything I’d done which was worthy of having a place in her competition.

Nothing. Nada. Zip!I was a bit upset with myself. I tend to think of myself as quite nice, but clearly I was resting on my laurels or listening to my own good press or something, because I realised with horror that I had actually *done* nothing. I ‘fessed up to having done nothing kind which could count, and resolved to do better.

Opportunities seemed to present themselves once I was looking for them, which was awesome, and allowed me to mitigate the nagging feeling that I talked a better game than I played. Perhaps there’s something about being too accustomed to other people thinking you’re good, which makes you complacent and lazy. Perhaps, equally, there’s something to knowing that really you’re not all that good, which makes you desire to do better, so that you are equal to at least *some* of the good opinion people bestow upon you.

Anyway, kindness proliferated, and I was able to share it further and further, encouraging friends to share instances when they had experienced other people demonstrating kindness. Increasingly it feels as though we’re living in a global society which is trying to link up and connect in meaningful ways, through kindness, compassion, empathy, and wonder. Might just be the corner of the World Between the Wires that I choose to associate with, but I’ll take it, I really will, because it means that my news feed is filled with people either doing good, standing up against bad, or making positive connections.

Call them out for kindness

I want more of that, and I think kindness is key. It resonates with all of us – we’ve all experienced it. We’ve all known what it is to do something lovely for someone else, because it will make them happy, and that makes US happy. There are a million ways to say ‘the gift is in the giving’, and I think there’s a reason that kind of saying gets trotted out so often – truth is sprinkled through it like chocolate chips.

I know there’s so very much badness out there, and it seems utterly overwhelming, but everywhere there are people standing up for one another. They’re calling out the injustices and bullies and mean governments. They’re decrying the guns and the tragedies and beginning to work together to demand change. They’re recognising assholes and insisting on change for the better.

Look at the individuals who are standing up for GOOD, and who are working damn hard to spread it as far and wide as they can – they’re everywhere. We’re everywhere. In the end, if we all band together in action, it will be okay. We’ll be okay. You’ll be okay. Together, we’re stronger.

You'll be okay

Admittedly most of the clicks and shares aren’t translating to action yet, but it’s a slow, slow process to mobilise good. It will happen. The pendulum of this world is on an out-swing to danger and bad, but people are taking ever better care to be educated, engaged, and empathetic. They are connecting with one another and banding together to make a difference.

With each like, each share, each gentle challenge to attitude or outmoded thinking, each new voice who calls for truth and justice and goodness, each person who joins the ranks of those who CARE…THERE is our hope.

This season, what we all need more of is HOPE.

So much seems to degenerate around guns and red cups and Syria and whether or not your brand of thinking is good enough for whoever’s agenda, and really it doesn’t make a damn difference if all you’re doing is arguing about it. None of it. This is one time when words will no longer suffice. Kindness can be spoken or written, but it rarely occurs mid-argument. And most of it is something small and intentional, done purposefully, in a quiet way.

There are big problems in this world. Ones which seem insurmountable, and conversations HAVE to happen. Change (on a massive scale) NEEDS to happen. But anyone holding forth on social media is unlikely to make vast changes. Not saying it can’t happen, but it seems unlikely. And if we’re going to gamble on making a change, I’d love to stack the odds by choosing ACTION.

If you’re out of ideas for ACTIONS to take, Galit even has a handy list of 31 Purposeful Acts of Kindness. Think of your own, by all means, but I love these. They’re about connection, empathy, acknowledgement, connection, and ultimately, love.
#LoveWins. Really.

❤ For Friendship

❤ For Music

❤ For Beauty

❤ For Encouragement

❤ For Poetry (twice)

❤ For Connection

❤ For Love

❤ For Family

❤ For Hope

❤ For You

You’ll be okay
You’ll be okay
The sun will rise
To better days

And change will come
It’s on its way
Just close your eyes
And let it rain

So…over to you. To notice kindness. To name and fame those who do it. To do it yourself.

Start today – the comments section is always open ❤

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37 thoughts on “Ten Things of Thankful 129 (on kindness) #10Thankful

  1. Pingback: The Little Things – Guest bloggers – Day 8 | The Heart of Sassy Lassie

  2. This is the week that Tucker circles gifts in a catalog that we get in the mail each year. For other kids. Kindness matters. Giving matters. So much. Love this.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Awwwh that’s so lovely 🙂 I do think it’s wonderful that you foster that compassion and understanding in him. You’re helping him change his own world…and that’s amazing ❤

      Kindness matters. Huge much.

      Like

  3. I sent my kids in with gifts for children in care today. And we cleaned out our pantry and donated to the local food bank too. Christmas I can usually come up with something – it’s other times of the year I need the reminder. Thanks for this sweetie.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Somehow Lizzy, I am convinced that just because you couldn’t think of a recent kindness, doesn’t mean you hadn’t actually done something kind. I tend to think the only thing that could stop you from being kind is a temporary coma.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Ohhh bless your boots Vanessa! That’s such a wonderful thing to say. You’ve warmed my heart 🙂 No coma, and since I’ve been thinking about it, I’ve been a bit better about intentionally being kind (although, as I said to Pat – I need to get better at paying attention to when I do it…) 🙂

      Like

  5. This is such a wonderful post! I went to the site you mentioned and printed off the list, and will have an opportunity to share this list of ideas soon, as well as trying to be more cognizant of the things I want to do and to recognize those I am already doing.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Ohhh thanks Pat! I’m glad you like it, and the list of ideas is GORGEOUS isn’t it? Loved it. I think being more mindful of what we’re already doing is a good thing – I’m not good at paying attention to that 🙂

      Like

  6. ‘cellent vidchat last evening. while perhaps not on the level of deliberate kindness, there is something remarkable (at least to me, being such a clark) at the possibility of interacting with once-total-strangers-since-becoming-friends with such ease. cool
    Rob

    Liked by 1 person

    • Remarkable but also a testament to determination and overcoming. Given the technical difficulties, sometimes, PARTICULARLY those things.

      It was good. Let’s invite those good folks again next week, shall we?

      Laura x

      Like

  7. Seems like kindness was on both of our minds this week. 🙂

    Your observations about thinking we’re good people until we actually sit down and think about HOW we’re good people is brilliant. It’s true. It’s so easy to get complacent and think, “I am a good person” simply because we don’t do anything bad. Being good has to go farther than that. We have to get out and actually do good.

    Nice things I’ve seen people do this week: Parents taking lunches to teachers who have birthdays this week, little kids being generous with their belongings, a middle school girl keeping a bunch of hyper kindergarteners occupied before their Christmas concert.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Ohhhh now those are some beautiful kindnesses you’ve noticed. It seems especially lovely (though perhaps it shouldn’t feel especially surprising) when children are kind to each other.

      I’ll run over and see yours in a minute – I want to know what you have to say on the subject – you’re one of the people I nearly called out on Facebook for all of the amazing things you do, quietly and behind the scenes, for others.

      And yeah – complacency is ridiculously easy to get into. It’s worth being vigilant for it.

      Like

  8. Thanks for the link to #kindnesswins. And just in time. I discovered a local charity that matches children and families in need with donors. I picked a 15 year old boy to sponsor this Christmas. It was so much fun picking out things he wanted and things he needed (gift card for shoes). Soon after, I discovered a local teen shelter and their Amazon wish list. Something I didn’t expect was art supplies. Their website showed some of the teens paintings, and they were so very well done. You can see how therapeutic it is. So I took advantage of the holiday sales going on and stocked up. I believe I’ll be supporting the shelter on a regular basis now. So easy to pick up an extra bottle of dish soap or some rolls of paper towels as I’m shopping.

    Liked by 1 person

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